No Exit by Taylor Adams

April 22, 2019

No Exit by Taylor Adams is a thriller set in the Colorado Rockies. It is 333 pages, but as a disclaimer, I read all 333 of them in about three or four hours. I received No Exit through Book of the Month Club, and it was released in December of 2018.

Before we start, let me provide some background. No Exit revolves around Darby, a college student who is racing through a snow storm in order to see her dying mother. She gets stranded at a remote rest stop without any cell reception. There are four strangers inside, and at first Darby believes that this will just be an annoying night, until she goes outside and finds a child locked in a cage in one of the vehicles. One of the strangers is a kidnapper…but which one?

No Exit has sat on my shelf since I received it the first week of December. I was in the middle of other books at the time, and then was gifted 12 books for Christmas, so I had a bit of other reading that was more important. At this point I’ve read every book I own besides No Exit and Lost and Wanted (review probably coming soon). I regret putting No Exit off for so long.

Thrillers are my favorite, and I am always skeptical of new releases or authors that only have a few books published. I believe it takes talent to write an excellent thriller that stays with you, and I have found that many times it takes authors a few tries to really write a thriller that packs a punch.

Taylor Adams blew me away. He shocked me with twists and characters that I was not expecting, and really just could not put the book down because nothing was ever as it seemed. There were constant highs and lows in terms of action and suspense, but they didn’t seem monotonous. There were times when the action was heightened due to the weather, times when it was due to the characters themselves, and other times when it was seemingly random factors that you never see coming.

Therefore, if you are looking for a novel that is fast paced, while also taking place in the course of 12 hours, No Exit would be a great read. The plot is definitely a roller coaster when it comes to the characters and how the night unfolds. My final thought on the actual plot of No Exit is that the ending was surprising, and I had to read the final few pages several times, but I do not know if I really loved it. You will have to read it and let me know what you think!

Disclaimers:

I like to prepare my readers for any sensitive topics that may be in a novel. No Exit was honestly pretty mild, but there are some heavy topics.

First of all, there are a couple of passing references to sex trafficking and the violence involved. Most of it is vague, or only a sentence of a reference, but it is still an aspect of the novel.

Another underlying plot in the novel is Darby’s struggle with her mother’s health. She does not have a good relationship with her mother, and is only on this trip because she has been diagnosed with late stage pancreatic cancer. Therefore, strained familial relationships and terminal illness also show up in the plot.

Finally, there is not am excess of violence, more of just action scenes, which I really liked. However, I discovered through retelling the plot to my husband that the little violence there is in the novel may be more disturbing. The reason for this is that none of the “weapons” used in the story are conventional. (Nail gun as bad guy’s weapon of choice? Creative.) So even though the violence is not as intense as other novels, if unconventional violence makes you squeamish, or if you like your thrillers sans violence, take this as your gauge.

Overall, No Exit was one of the most excellent books I have read in 2019 (sorry if I have said that a million times, I just keep being floored by these newer authors!). If you enjoy a good thriller, especially one that has the entire plot smashed into less than a day, please pick up this book. I could not put it down once I started reading.

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